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This weekend we finally had some great weather for a cook-out. So in between kids’ soccer games I decided to do some shopping. I did not have a list but I had been in the supermarket before, so how hard could it be. Well the result was as follows:
- I bought stuff that we still had
- I forgot stuff that I needed
- And the shopping took twice as long because there was no planning and I realized a few times I had to go back to aisle 1 and then back to 13 etc.
If I had taken a few minutes at home and planned my shopping trip, it would have been faster, less waste full and more effective.
You probably feel where I am heading; having a meeting unprepared is similar to my shopping experience. It is a waste of time. You may discuss issues that are not relevant and since no-one is prepared and have to think about arguments during the meeting you tend to go back and forth between subjects. The worst is when 30 minutes after the meeting, you suddenly realize that you did not discuss that one issue that you wanted input on.
Do yourself and the people you meet with a favor: Prepare an agenda.